Koh Matsum is located a few kilometres off the south coast of Samui. Its low-lying terrain means it can be easily missed, but on sunny days its white sand beaches are strikingly visible from Samui. To reach it, you’ll need a boat, and they’re easy to hire at the village of Thong Krut in the very south of Samui. The journey to the village is one of the most scenic on the island; there’s little development in the south of the island, the roads are far quieter and for long stretches you might encounter no other traffic at all.
Close to Koh Samui, adventure beckons in spades. Mysterious islands dot the sea, and relatively few people have visited them. Koh Samui belongs to an archipelago that has dozens of islands, some of which are no bigger than a football pitch in size, while others are large enough to warrant a village or two being built there – yet hardly anyone has chosen to settle them as it would mean a hardscrabble existence.
All eyes are on Samui as a busy cosmos with thousands of visitors a month, but a near-silent world beckons just a few miles away. Koh Matsum, also spelled Koh Madsum, is one of the archipelago’s treasures, and these days, it’s a cinch to visit – it used not to be – but the surprise is that so few people avail themselves of the opportunity.
Location: Taling Ngam, Ko Samui District, Surat Thani 84330 Thailand